Be a role model for good nutrition
Children are little copycats: They love to do everything you do. That means they also want to eat what you eat. Be a role model for healthy eating, and your child will be more likely to eat well now and later in life.
Here are some tips to help you showcase healthy habits to your little one:
Eat meals together at the table. This helps her learn the importance of mealtime as a social and shared occasion.
Avoid distractions at the dinner table such as TV or a radio. It’s important for children as well as adults to practice mindful eating. Mealtimes should be focused on eating, not doing other things.
Don't make faces when you taste something you don't like. It’s important for children as well as adults to practice mindful eating. Mealtimes should be focused on eating, not doing other things.
Eat healthy foods. If you make fruits and vegetables a regular part of your meals, she'll be more apt to mimic your healthful choices. Save those “once in a while” foods for when your child isn’t around.
Watch what you say about a food or a food group. For instance if your mother-in-law brings a broccoli salad to share at dinner, don’t say, “None for me; I hate broccoli.” Instead just pass the salad to the next person. Encourage other people to hold back their dislike for a food as well. It may only take one negative comment to turn a child off a food for years or even a lifetime.
Be willing to serve a food, even if you don't like it. Just because you don’t like a food doesn’t mean your child will feel the same way.